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Thread: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

  1. #16
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Perfect actual case: http://www.codeguru.com/forum/showthread.php?t=465523

    The posted code appears to have a common and potentially severe problem, in that the SQLConnection is not Disposed at all..let alone in a reliable fashion.

    Given that failure to properly handle objects implementing IDisposable is one of the leading reasons for .NET performance issues, I believe this to be an important point....

    ...but it does not relate SPECIFICALLY to the asked question....
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  2. #17
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    A student knows that they need guidance above what they are getting from their teacher. They approach a person to tutor/mentor them, and the person agrees. The mentor knows what is required to excel in the course of study.

    The student listens carefully to the mentor, and after a period of time, the mentor tell the student that they have learned all that they need.

    The student takes the test, and accurately follows everything he learned from the mentor.

    Later the student is shocked to learn that they got a mediocre or poor grade, and returns to the mentor...
    a) The mentor must admit that he failed the student?

    or

    b) The mentor chastizes the student for not asking the "right" questions.
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  3. #18
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Quote Originally Posted by TheCPUWizard View Post
    The posted code appears to have a common and potentially severe problem, in that the SQLConnection is not Disposed at all..let alone in a reliable fashion.

    Given that failure to properly handle objects implementing IDisposable is one of the leading reasons for .NET performance issues, I believe this to be an important point....

    ...but it does not relate SPECIFICALLY to the asked question....
    Well it doesn't get called in the exception case, but we don't know for sure for the normal case because the code snippet isn't complete.

    I've suggested using a 'using' block as an alternate approach without explaining that Dispose gets called which calls Close(). I showed the 'using' approach to mainly clean up the code as the OP's code is horrible.

    I mainly included a different approach to better help the user track down his problem (which is quite simple to do with slightly different code). I didn't get into any performance issues because [imo] it's not relevant to the question. If he asks about performance, then we can address that.

    Although it's important

  4. #19
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Quote Originally Posted by TheCPUWizard View Post
    a) The mentor must admit that he failed the student?

    or

    b) The mentor chastizes the student for not asking the "right" questions.
    I don't see how this applies to this forum. I see those who answer questions here as someone merely offering suggestions rather than being in a mentoring role.

  5. #20
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    What I usually do is :
    I will post a reply to a thread, sometimes it is hard to 100% "guess" the level of the OP's knowledge, sometimes ( based on the question it is not ). If my reply was helpful, it was helpful to the OP, if my reply was totally incorrect ( which happens to all of us ), I trust that another member would set it right - that is how it supposed to work vice versa. Now, if my post was half - way correct ( granted it still may not be fine ), and someone comments on it, I expect the person to at least say why was it wrong, otherwise, neither me or the OP will ever know why it was wrong, what could have been done otherwise etc.
    I won't go and edit my post, simply because it was wrong - I've seen many a member do this, giving the illusion that he / she is perfect. I doubt newbies would judge a person if he / she has made some mistakes on the forum - I think it makes us all human.

    I sometimes like to attach samples to members, especially if it was something I found interesting ( that is where most of my ideas for my articles comes from ). I believe that, if a person that really needs it, he / she will stumble upon that post and find useful information - heck, some time ago I even got points for something I did 2 years before! Everything you put on & believe is helpful, usually is.

    About threads going off topic :
    Usually I have seen this happen with threads comparing .NET to VB 6 etc. They always go off on the same old topic, and everyone ( including me ) is always trying to force their opinions on everyone - nothing will ever convince old timers to convert to .NET for example ( no offense intended ).

    Another example would be if an OP asks a question, someone replies with a correct method; another member replies with a different correct method, and yet another member comes and answers with yet another correct method; now there is not really a wrong answer here, but 3 different ways of achieving the OP's goal. Usually the OP's are very appreciative about all he / she has learnt with one simple question, but now, say for example, only reply 2 was "100% correct", and he / she starts to argue his / her views with Answerer 1 and Answerer 3 - why , what for - is that really necessary ¿ - I'd say, no, because that will just cause new confusion and new doubts from the OP. Where the OP was on cloud 9, he / she is now all of a sudden 10 feet below ground ( and now has to start the process all over ). Do not "teach" a newbie the most complicated way of doing things, just because you can - he / she will get there eventually, we all did, didn't we ¿
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  6. #21
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Disclamer: I do not have the answers, only some personal views on the matter.

    I was already using this site for years and years before I actually posted for the first time. Most of the answers were just a search away, which is much faster than posting a question and waiting for an answer. It will not surprise me if there are a lot of people who regularly use this site to find information and yet haven't seen the need to post a single question.
    Now, when you do a search for a particular something then you may find (say) three threads that are actually an answer to your question. Even if these three threads only contain one answer each, you still have three (possibly very different) answers. My point is that if the goal is to get one single proper answer per question for archiving reasons then it will still fail on the search.

    The main reason I used this site was the good hit rate - lots of useful information and hardly any of those pesky "yeah me too" kind of posts. (You know, 6 posts in a thread - one question and five "I'm looking for this as well" posts). From that perspective I do think that preserving the quality of the information provided is important in the long run - not just for the OP.

    Personally I always liked finding multiple answers to a question. That is how most things in technology work - the more complex the question, the more possible answers there usually are. This sometimes shows me a solution I did not think of myself but also helps with questioning the answers given. More than a few times the ongoing discussion about the differences between two answers by the respective posters has been very interesting to follow.

    Of course (as said by others) this is dependant on the situation of the OP - (at least some of) the urgent homework crowd would like a quick simple answer so they do not need to think for themselves. Some of the novice OPs are eager to learn but get may get too confused when multiple answers are given, and even more so if a discussion flares up that discusses the merits between several solutions of which the OP has not enough experience to grasp the meaning of the discussion. Still I believe that providing more information is always better then providing less information.

    The best solution on wrong information is to not post it at all. But we are all just human and make mistakes. Personally I put a small warning note on one of my posts if it turns out that I completely missed the mark with my "solution". Otherwise I just leave it there "as is" as the next posts in the thread usually put it right. You never know - the OP may see the erroneous post and the posts that explain why it is wrong and learn from it. What I do dislike though is people who do not accept that they have made a mistake and defend their erroneous post tooth and nail. But I guess it is human nature - I used to have a colleague like that and it is exactly the reason why I wrote "used to". Unfortunately I do not see a way to resolve this particular situation with this kind of person. These discussions tend not to end with the error being admitted and thus can go on ad infinitum...

  7. #22
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Regarding EDITING of ones existing posts, and the correcting of information.

    My opinion is that unless the edit is "immediate", it is much better to:

    * Make a new reply with the correct information
    * Note the # of the new reply
    * Edit the older reply with a simple "This contains an Error See ###"
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  8. #23
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Quote Originally Posted by Arjay View Post
    I don't see how this applies to this forum. I see those who answer questions here as someone merely offering suggestions rather than being in a mentoring role.
    Quote Originally Posted by Merriam-Webster
    Mentor -a trusted counselor or guide.
    Counselor - a person who gives advice
    OK, so we have the following:

    1) Trusted
    2) Person
    3) Gives
    4) Advice
    5) Guide
    While some may question #2 for some members ; I think the only item from that list that is quantifiable is #1 (Trusted).

    While everyone here is volunteering their time, I believe that being able to Trust the information still applies here on the forum.
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  9. #24
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Quote Originally Posted by TheCPUWizard View Post
    * Make a new reply with the correct information
    * Note the # of the new reply
    * Edit the older reply with a simple "This contains an Error See ###"
    In my opinion... if the post needs changed, and making a change does not impact any of the following posts, then changing the post is the best action as long as a note is added indicating it was changed.

    If changing the post does impact a later post, then I believe it is dependent upon the specifics of the post and thread.

    But I digress from the main topic....

  10. #25
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Someone asked the question, but didn't want to post it, so I will:

    Why is there a need by some members to prove everyone else wrong?

    I believe this is an intersting question. If you are posting with the intent of proving others wrong, then you are posting for a bad reason . If you want to simply prove others wrong, start a new thread.

  11. #26
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Quote Originally Posted by Brad Jones View Post
    Someone asked the question, but didn't want to post it, so I will:
    Why is there a need by some members to prove everyone else wrong?
    I believe this is an intersting question. If you are posting with the intent of proving others wrong, then you are posting for a bad reason . If you want to simply prove others wrong, start a new thread.
    In my 10 years here, I have very very rarely seen a member who has wanted to prove "everyone" wrong. The few cases were where someone had a "special" view that was contrary to nearly all accepted views, and was attempting to justify their own.

    On the other hand, I have seen (and been one) members who question a specific members knowledge. This is especially true when in one thread they are asking very basic questions, and then posting "advice" to other members which is also flawed.

    While there are many many cases where one novice can help another novice, it yould definately be questionable for a freshman who has not yet passed "100" level courses to give advice to a post graduate student on advanced material in that field.

    The internet is a great equalizer, but to a large degree this masks the degree of knowledge that a person has to back up their position.

    -----

    Starting a new thread is an option. But is it effective? Knowing that people will tend to read sequentially (rather than following links), how does one effectively tie the information together?

    If someone starts on the original thread, they may not follow a link in a given reply directing them to the new thread, when they might read additional replies that follow...

    If someone starts on the new thread, they can not easily see the information (on the original thread) that prompted the new thread...

    -----

    Finally (and just speaking for myself), there is little to "prove". As Hannes previously posted, it is often futile to attempt to change a persons belief.

    But what about the "great masses" who are searching? Look at some of the "Viewed" counts on some threads, they can easily be in the 100's. Isn't providing information for these readers "The Greater Good"?
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  12. #27
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    If there was one "change" I would like to see on CG [and I know this has been discussed in the past] it would be a change in the default setting for private messages.

    Many times posters have these disabled (by default - because few actually read the FAQs and set up their profile), and the ONLY way to transmit information is via the forums thread.

    While this may cause some people to "accumulate" unread messages, that could be addressed in a number of ways....
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  13. #28
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Cpu, isn't the subject of private messages going off-topic?

  14. #29
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    With regard to the mentoring, consider this scenario.

    Imagine if you are a senior engineer at a company and a new guy is hired in a different group but is seated close to you.

    After a few days on the job, the guys asks you a question. The answer is easy, so you tell him, but in doing so you notice several other areas they potentially may be an issue.

    The other areas are more advanced topics and would require several hours of explanation.

    Do you...

    Casually mention the potential issues?

    Spend the next 3 hours going into detail?

  15. #30
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    Re: Thread topicallity, accuracy and integrity....

    Quote Originally Posted by Arjay View Post
    Do you...
    Casually mention the potential issues?
    Spend the next 3 hours going into detail?
    Most likely the former by default with an offer of the latter...

    But the scenario I have been talking about is different.

    Consider if (after you had given the "simple" answere), some other junior or mid-level engineer jumps into the conversation with information that is either inappropriate for the question that was asked, or in some way will have a negative impact on the way the original information may be applied in the future????

    * Say "The Heck with it"
    * Inform BOTH the original novice and the person who jumped in of the ramifications of the information

    ----
    re: PM's..

    I think it IS on-topic. If we want to keep threads more tightly focused (some people have PM'ed me in favor of on-thread debate!!!) and still address the issue, then Privately is a viable option...IF the person can be reach via that means...With the default setting, most of the "offenders" have PM's still turned off because they did not take the time to read the FAQ's and set up their "CP"....
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